Monday, November 16, 2009

Me 5.0

In the current issue of Kosmos (Fall/Winter 2009) Mark Gerzon offers a two-part exploration of global citizenship. Using the analogy of upgraded computer software, Mark identifies five iterations of citizenship:

Citizen 1.0— Worldview based on one’s self (egocentric).
Citizen 2.0— Worldview based on one’s group (ideocentric).
Citizen 3.0— Worldview based on one’s nation (sociocentric).
Citizen 4.0— Worldview based on multiple cultures (multicentric).
Citizen 5.0— Worldview based on the whole earth (geocentric).

While Mark’s metaphor may be original to him, the idea itself is not. Don Beck’s Spiral Dynamics, for example, is a more complex and perhaps more complete version of Mark Gerzon’s citizenship idea,* but Mark’s has the distinct advantage of being easily articulated.

When I read his essay it clearly exposed my own inner struggle with the issue of backward compatibility. The more globally oriented I become, the more difficult it is for me to identify with this or that religion, ethnic group, or nationality.

At the corporate level, most religions operate at Citizen 2.0. The primary focus of the religion is who is in and who is out. Yes, there are other concerns such as justice and compassion, and there are progressive 5.0 thinkers within these religions whose focus is elsewhere, but the primary concern of corporate religion and corporate religious leaders is with market share and branding—who is in and who is out.

My question is this: as more and more of us become Citizen 5.0 what will happen to Religion 2.0? As I become more geocentric, can I maintain Zionism? As I recognize the blending of many spiritual teachings in my own life can I maintain Judaism as my singular religious identity?

For me the answer is clearly “no.” The more global I become the less exclusively anything I become. The more global I become the more I find myself articulating what I believe to be true using metaphors drawn from all the world’s religions. The more I live with Citizen 5.0 the more I experience Religion 5.0 and refuse to be limited to any one faith. My loyalty is to truth, and no religion has a monopoly on that. I draw from art, literature, philosophy, science, music, mysticism, myth, etc. to create a rich 5.0 tapestry of reality reflecting what I experience as real. And I no longer care where it comes from.

My guess is that Jews are at the forefront of Citizen 5.0. If Judaism is going to survive Jews 5.0 it will have to remake itself into Judaism 5.0. I am not sure it can. I am not sure it matters. But I am sure it matters to me. Ah the blessed unrest of inner turmoil.

* www.spiraldynamics.net

12 comments:

Patti said...

So good.

I have been searching for a way to understand and maybe explain what happened to my faith after facing my son's possible death at an outpost in Afghanistan. My selfish prayers of “spare him, spare him” made me sick to my stomach. Despair opened a link to the world when I connected with the generations of mothers weeping for their children in battle. I had jumped from 1.0 right to 5.0 when I realized that to pray for his survival was to pray for the death of others; his enemies, and in all honesty, his fellow soldiers; anyone else but my child, and I could not do that. Even as a mother, I could not pray to save him at the expense of the others. Consequently, I sat broken and wordless, trying to let God be God and let humanity be responsible for our own actions. There is no going back to a 1.0 faith with such an empty and lonely safety net. I wonder if all 1.0’s need a free fall in order to climb the citizen ladder?

I agree with you. There is no way that I can identify with Christianity on all levels any longer. Unlike your Judaism, however, I don’t want to hang on. I long to let it go and find something broader.

Jim Wells said...

I am reminded of this quote:

"I" and "You" are the veil
Between heaven and earth;
Lift this veil and you will see
No longer the bonds
Of Sects and Creeds.
When "I" and "You"
Do not exist,
What is a Mosque?
What is a Synagogue?
What's the Temple of Hindus?
What's the Church of Christ?
--Rumi

Jordan said...

Shalom Rav,

You wrote:

"My guess is that Jews are at the forefront of Citizen 5.0."

So what? Other than an accident of birth what's the content of their Jewishness that provides meaning beyond the trivial to the word "Jews" ? You continued:

"If Judaism is going to survive Jews 5.0 it will have to remake itself into Judaism 5.0. I am not sure it can. I am not sure it matters. But I am sure it matters to me."

But not enough to accept my repeated challenges to do something with me or others about remaking Judaism. You continued:

"Ah the blessed unrest of inner turmoil."

So what are you going to do with these feelings, beyond let us know you have them?

Biv'racha,
Jordan

Rabbi Rami said...

Great comments. Patti, thanks for your honesty. I struggle with the "clinging," and have for a long time. And Jim's Rumi poem spoke directly to my heart. Thanks for that as well.

Jordan's challenge is welcome, necessary, but ultimately not for me. I have articulated my Judaism 5.0 in my book "Open Secrets," and I am totally burned out vis a vis creating yet another movement. So, as you say, Jordan, I will have to content myself with just griping,

Jim Wells said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jim Wells said...

As I have said previously, I really appreciate "Open Secrets," especially from a theological perspective. I wonder, though, how it translates into your vision for "Judaism 5.0." Please say a little more about that.

Jordan, how would you like to see Judaism change and how do you think your vision could be promoted if Rami and others join you and others in working for the desired changes?

Karen said...

This is such a profound, meaningful post for me. Thank you, Rabbi Rami, for sharing your thoughts.

I would probably put myself at the 5.0 level, and it can be a rather frustrating, lonely level to embrace because I seem to be surrounded by family and friends who are in the 1.0-3.0 range, with a few dabbling in 4.0. It seems that once I "know" something, I can't "unknow" it!

I'm not sure I can even articulate my feelings about this -- it might not sound the way I want it to -- but I'll try anyway! I find that the more I embrace a deeper, more profound way of viewing humanity, the world, the universe, etc., the more I need to and am able to let go of views and ideas that are more traditional in our society/culture. I think, at the 5.0 level, organized religion is no longer necessary and loses its value, politics have much more gray area than stark contrasts, and man-made illusions become more clear.

Maybe it's human nature to want to feel included, to feel a part of something, and your desire of wanting Judaism to grow to the 5.0 level -- instead of allowing yourself to shed it entirely -- stems from this.

I'm sure I have more to say on this, but my ability to articulate my thoughts further has just fizzled on me!

Rabbi Rami said...

You can hear my struggle in this. With Karen, I am drawn to letting it all go. And yet I keep coming back to it. Not so much the forms of Jewish life, but the principles, and the texts. I am drawn to Krishnamurti no less than to Torah, so I struggle.

As for Open Secrets and Judaism 5.0, I think I set forth an outline of my thoughts on God, Torah, and Israel, and the holy days. I haven't reread the book in a long time, so maybe I am "remembering" a book not yet written.

Bottom line, though, I suspect there can be no movement for Judaism 5.0. The very idea of yet another denomination or movement is probably anathema to 5.0 living. Perhaps 5.0 just honors whatever wisdom one finds wherever one finds it. No leaders, no dues.

Trish said...

Maybe a 5.1 is required to remove the blessed unrest of inner turmoil.

AaronHerschel said...

I have the distinct feeling, bordering on conviction, that movements and "isms" are not really 5.0-ish, and the repeated calls, not just from Jordan, for the reinvention of or reinvigoration of Judaism all hover between the 2.0 and 4.0 levels.

Of course, I might also argue that 5.0-ness as it is articulated here bears too much of a resemblance to a kind of standard liberal universalism to be compelling for me either. I imagine that there is no level of consciousness worth embracing that isn't full of fierce struggle, that doesn't demand an ongoing renegotiation of self and other, and a tacit awareness of difference.

But perhaps I'm misunderstanding what is intended by 5.0 or even by "movement" and reform...

Jordan said...

Shalom All,

Jim wrote/asked:

"Jordan, how would you like to see Judaism change"

I've written about this before in response to other
posts herein. If you'd like links, let me know.
Jim continued:

"and how do you think your vision could be promoted if Rami and others join you and others in working for the desired changes?"

The only way my vision or that of anyone else can
be realized is by actually forming a community
of like minded souls. @Rabbi Rami; it's not about "creating yet another movement;" a movement would be the reward for developing measurably successful communities. This is the model of the
megachurch where measurably successful churches
spawned measurably successful movements. Examples are Saddleback Church (Pastor/Dr. Rick Warren) and the Purpose Driven Church Movement; and Willow Creek Community Church (Pastor Bill Hybels) and the Willow Creek Association.

One of the reasons the Jewish movements are dying is because they did not grow out of measurably successful synagogues; ie., they are overstaffed with folks that have never actually led a synagogue.

Rabbi Rami wrote:

"Bottom line, though, I suspect there can be no movement for Judaism 5.0. The very idea of yet another denomination or movement is probably anathema to 5.0 living. Perhaps 5.0 just honors whatever wisdom one finds wherever one finds it."

Pick and choose syncretism, to have any integrity, assumes that one actually has done the work to at least familiarize oneself with the multitude of wisdom literature. You have done this but my guess is that very few others have. My guess is that most couldn't care less about doing this. Most seekers (for something beyond kumbaya) are looking for meaning by way of a consumerist approach. They want to know that the "wisdom" being taught is relevant to their lives as they are lived and experienced here and now in the 21rst century.

Said "wisdom" has to earn a place in these folks lives. It does this by always answering the question
"What's in it for me if I do this?"

Rabbi Rami continued:

"No leaders,"

A heart thumping and God honoring passion producing vision will by definition come from a leader that is able to generate buy in and
ownership for those that choose to be members of that tribe (in the Seth Godin sense of that phrase).
You continued:

"no dues."

Correct. No DUES. People will generously give their time talents and tithes to something they perceive as having value, not out of obligation but of their own free will. That's what happens at both Willow and Saddleback.

@Aaron Herschel who wrote: "Of course, I might also argue that 5.0-ness as it is articulated here bears too much of a resemblance to a kind of standard liberal universalism to be compelling for me either."

Gut gezogt (well said)!!
Biv'racha,
Jordan

Phil said...

Very nice, Rami! But, why settle for a merely-planetary consciousness? Genuine cosmopolitanism is not bounded by the sky.

http://osopher.wordpress.com/2009/11/21/whole-earth/